Our professionals at Genuine Property Solutions (GPS) of Columbia, South Carolina, often see water damage in homes and offices as a result of leaks or lack of proper overflow controls. Water damage can happen when there are roof, sink or toilet leaks, bad connections to hot water heaters or clogged AC condensation lines or catch pans. Read more about the six most common causes of water damage, ways to detect leaks and tips from our pros on water damage restoration.

Roof Leaks and Ceiling Damage

Roof leaks can occur for a number of reasons such as wind and hail damage, bad caulking around chimneys or nail pops due to an aging roof system. And over-usage, or frequent walking on the roof, can damage shingles as well, making it more prone to leaks. To detect a roof leak, check all ceilings for signs of water damage. This will appear as rings or wet spots on the ceiling.

If you suspect a roof leak or see water damage on the ceiling, our GPS Pros advise to have an assessment done as soon as possible. A professional will search for the source of the water damage and can then stop any leaks before further damage can occurs. From that point, tests can be performed to check the depth of the damage and make suggestions for repair and restoration.

Final Tips:
  • Have a professional routinely check your roof for nail pops, missing or damaged shingles, bad caulking around flashing or animal and pest damage.
  • Keep gutters clear.
  • Contact GPS for details about our Home Maintenance Plans that include regular roof assessments.

Water Damage Around AC Units and Water Heaters

Another very common cause of water damage is at the location of hot water heaters. Leaks occur as a result of faulty connection points for lines going in and out of water heaters or a failed thermal expansion valve. One way to detect this type of leak is by checking the drain pan your hot water heater sits in. If there is water present in the pan you should contact a professional for further assistance.

The next most common cause of water damage is around AC units located in attics. Leaks that start here can damage ceilings and walls and occur when condensation lines get clogged and a proper overflow pan is not in use or is also compromised.

For leaks near water heaters and AC units, our professionals again recommend having an initial damage assessment performed. Leaks should be resolved, which can involve clearing condensation lines or overflow pans, installing safety shut-off/flow switches and making other repairs. Then, areas with water damage can be addressed.

Final Tips:
  • Change air filters regularly to prevent clogs.
  • Don’t store anything around air handlers that can damage drain pans or the AC unit itself.
  • Have a professional check for water damage while doing routine assessments or maintenance.

Water Damage in Kitchen and Bathrooms

When we get calls from customers about water leaks in bathrooms or kitchens, we know the likely source is either a sink or toilet. Sinks can sometimes go on leaking for days undetected and can therefore cause water damage in the cabinetry underneath. Our professionals highly recommend repairing sink leaks quickly to avoid mold growth and more costly, extensive restoration.

Toilet leaks, on the other hand, are typically caught pretty quickly as an obvious pool of water forms around the base of the leaky toilet. This can happen if the wax seal fails or is improperly installed at the base or when tank bolts become rusted over time. Fortunately, a professional can quickly and easily replace a wax seal or bolts and water damage is not always eminent.

Final Tips:
  • Routinely check under all sinks for water spots and signs of leaks, especially for kitchen sinks with garbage disposals.
  • Don’t store heavy objects under sinks to avoid over-burdening supply and drain lines. Also, do not store heavy items on toilet tanks.
  • Make sure your Home Maintenance Plan includes drain cleaning and checking for leaks, rusted hardware and water damage.

For any source of water damage, the first priority should be to figure out what type of leak caused the damage and to stop it if it’s still leaking. Next, having a professional assess the depth and severity of the water damage will enable them to provide you with the best restoration guidance. For help with water damage restoration in the Columbia, South Carolina area, call Genuine Property Solutions at 803-834-4828 to speak with one of our trusted plumbing and restoration professionals.

Read more about ways to prevent mold growth here >> Prevent Mold with Spray Foam Insulation

To prevent roof leaks or catch them early, contact one of our Roofing Professionals today!